Royal Manitoba Winter Fair wraps up for another year


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Photos by John Drinkwater
Lined up for judging: Johnson Belgiums left, Lone Oak Percherons and 7D King Farms.

Eoin Devereux
Neepawa Banner & Press

Despite a slight drop in overall attendance numbers, the organizers of the 2018 Royal Manitoba Fair are still very pleased with this year’s event. The Winter Fair, which occurs every year in the final week of March at Brandon’s Keystone Centre, saw just under 110,000 people passed through the admission gates. That’s a drop of about 2,000 visitors compared to 2017. Provincial Exhibition of Manitoba general Manager Ron Kristjansson said there are likely a few factors for the slight decrease in the numbers.

“Attendance was down slightly from last year, but we do recognize that the Easter weekend is a busy time for many families. The return of some colder than average weather for this time of year may have deterred some guests from coming out,” said Kristjansson. “But still, we had many families attend and telling us just how much the fair means to them. The wide variety of competition, entertainment options, shopping experiences and socializing is what has made the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair such a lasting part of their lives and the community of southwestern Manitoba.”

Kristjansson also credited the Provincial Ex and Keystone staff, as well as the hundreds of volunteers, for ensuring that this year would be a success.

“I am very proud of the efforts of our incredible staff and volunteers that have accomplished our goal of hosting a successful world-class event for athletes and our community,” said Kristjansson

The Royal Manitoba Winter Fair is one of the premier annual events for the Provincial Exhibition of Manitoba,  the organization who stages the show. The Provincial Ex also produces the Manitoba Summer Fair and Manitoba Ag Expo. The Ex’s next event will be the Summer Fair scheduled for June 6-10 at the Keystone Centre.

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Birds of Prey presented Sam the Bald Eagle at the Royal Stage, lower level, Keystone Centre on March 27, during the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair.

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Friends of RMNP set up an information booth during the 111th Royal Manitoba Winter Fair (March 26-31). Pictured are George Hartlan and Valerie Pankratz.